2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Simple, but fun.,
This review is from: Deathwatch (Warhammer 40000) (Paperback)
I found this to be broadly speaking a simple, but enjoyable 40K novel. It splits it's focus between the investigations conducted by two Inquisition agents on a bleak mining planet, and the training and later deployment of a newly constituted Deathwatch Kill-team.
Though I did like the Inquisitorial agents as characters, both being distinct and interesting, the investigation sections suffered somewhat due to the central mystery (ie what was happening on Chiaro) being glaringly obvious to me as an old 40K hand almost from page one of those parts of the book. Which was a shame. It's one thing for characters not to spot clues, due to arguably not knowing as much as a reader, but the author tries to tease the reader several times with this mystery - that is no mystery. It just doesn't work.
The gathering of the new Deathwatch recruits and their training is also a bit patchy in my opinion. The 21st century style military acronyms, used here and there during the training sections, actually felt somewhat out of place for Space Marines to me. Also I think the training was too long, it taking about two thirds of the book before the kill-team were actually sent into action.
On the other hand, the members of the kill-team are all well drawn and unique feeling Space Marines, each with a clearly recognisable and consistent character. The author makes full use of obscure Astartes Chapters, and the tensions between many of them. The Deathwatch itself is also described well, with the author having clearly used the Deathwatch RPG books for reference material, though I think the stealth/covert side of the DW's remit is somewhat over-stated.
I did also like the sneaky and clearly 'radical' Ordo Xenos Inquisitor 'Sigma', and I look forward to future stories of Karras and his team.